Fighting For Important Causes In State And Federal Courts
Female athletes are often given less recognition – and pay – than their male counterparts. These issues often start college and high school athletics, where female student-athletes may be given less than equal access to funding, scholarships, and promotion of their events. To make matters worse, many female student-athletes are subject to harassment and abuse by coaches and other athletic department staff.
If you or your daughter faced sex discrimination or sexual harassment as a student-athlete, you may be entitled to file a Title IX complaint and lawsuit to seek justice and financial compensation for the wrongs you faced. These claims can go a long way toward stopping discrimination and harassment against you as well as working to prevent future harassment and bringing these kinds of issues to light. For a free legal consultation on your case, call The Law Office of Andrew Shubin’s lawyer for Title IX violations involving female athletes. Our phone number is (814) 826-3586.
Rights Under Title IX for Female Student-Athletes
Title IX protects against sex-based discrimination in education. This means stopping not only discrimination and inequality against women and girls but also stopping sexual harassment. It also means that, while these protections apply generally to schooling and education, they also apply to school sports and athletics associated with a high school or university.
Under Title IX, high schools and universities that receive federal funding are barred from discrimination based on sex. This often works to include gender discrimination as well, bringing many LGBTQ athletes and trans athletes under its protection. These kinds of protections mean that the school cannot discriminate in any of the following ways:
- Providing unequal funding for gendered athletics
- Providing unequal facilities or equipment for gendered sports
- Failing to provide a girl’s/women’s team for gender-neutral sports (e.g., men’s and women’s track teams)
- Failing to provide an alternative sports opportunity for gendered sports teams (e.g., providing a softball team if they have a baseball team)
- Failing to provide scholarship opportunities for women’s athletics
- Failing to promote women’s sports equally to men’s
In addition, sexual harassment or misconduct against female athletes is also illegal. This means that if coaches, assistants, staff, team physicians, or other administrators or school employees assault or abuse female athletes, the school will also have violated the terms of Title IX.
Filing Title IX Lawsuits for Women’s Sports
If you have been mistreated or discriminated against on the basis of sex or gender with regard to your opportunities, accessibility, or treatment in sports, you may be entitled to file a lawsuit to seek compensation. The opportunities and harm you suffered can often be measured in terms of financial harm, which can be claimed as part of the compensation and damages you seek in a lawsuit. Even for intangible harms, you may still be able to seek damages.
In the case of discrimination, the damages will be very dependent on the facts of your case. The court may find compensable damages if you transferred schools or spent money in pursuit of your athletics career, but then discrimination cut off your access to those future gains or scholarships. You may also seek damages for additional expenses you or your family had to pay to push to get you the opportunities the school should have paid for.
In the case of sexual harassment or abuse, the damages can be more severe. Especially if the school was complicit in hiding the abuse or silencing reports of sexual harassment by a coach or other employee, you could be entitled to sue the institution for the harms you faced from the harassment or abuse. Even without any physical abuse, there might be damages for the embarrassment and emotional distress the harassment caused you. In cases involving sexual assault or abuse, you may have faced damages for medical expenses, therapy, and pain and suffering.
In any case, our attorney can help examine your case and work to determine what your claim is worth. In some cases, damages are less important than filing a complaint to stop the violations and keep you safe and free from discrimination.
Complaints and Lawsuits for Title IX Violations for Female Student-Athletes
If you are being subject to discrimination in girl’s or women’s athletics, you may also be able to file a Title IX complaint in addition to a lawsuit. This typically does not yield compensation for any harms you faced, but you can still file a complaint with your school to work toward ending the discrimination or harassment you face. Talk to a lawyer about whether a complaint or a lawsuit is right for your case.
It is the school’s responsibility to open an investigation and work to immediately stop any violations after a Title IX case is filed. The Office for Civil Rights within the Department of Education has rules and procedures for how schools must handle complaints and accusations of Title IX violations.
In any case, if you formally complain about a Title IX violation, you should be free from any retaliation or retribution from the school. Title IX bars the school from kicking you off the team, taking disciplinary actions against you, or restricting your rights or access to any programs or benefits as retaliation for your complaint or lawsuit. Talk to an attorney for help filing your case.
Call Our Title IX Violation Lawyers for Discrimination in Girl’s and Women’s Sports
If you are a student-athlete or you have a daughter who plays sports in school, it is important to protect her rights and keep her and her teammates free from sex discrimination, sexual harassment, and abuse. If you think you or your child has been the victim of discrimination or harassment, their civil rights may have been violated. Call The Law Office of Andrew Shubin to set up a free legal consultation and learn more about filing a lawsuit for Title IX violations. For your free consultation, call us today at (814) 826-3586.